THE BUTCHER'S BLOG
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Home alone – dog edition!
Lots of our furry friends have been the biggest winners by having their favourite humans at home with them during this difficult time. So, when it’s time for us to leave the house more, we need to get them ready for spending more time by themselves. Keep an eye out for signs of anxiety, these include; excessive barking, pacing, chewing or having accidents in the house, amongst others.
Try our tips below to help ease any anxiety your dog may have of being left alone.
Put into place a routine for your dog to help them settle down when they are alone, just make sure to put this into practise a few days before you leave the house for long periods of time to help your furry friend adjust! To help your dog remain calm during the day, go for a long walk in the morning to burn off energy and then again at night if you can. Once they have spent a lot of time exercising, they are more likely to have a midday nap and to feel calmer and not as full of energy.
If you have time in the morning, play a game of fetch on your walk or in your garden just like our Superfan Sonny, if not then play a long game with them when you return home to spend time with your furry friend.
Leave your dog with plenty of their toys, make sure their favourite one is close by! Invest in some puzzle games to keep your dog entertained and long-lasting chew toys, like a Kong, this can help them remain calm and settle down for a nice long gnaw.
Practise makes perfect
Try leaving your dog for a short amount of time in the days leading up to you being out and about more. Pop to the post box or go for a solo walk (after you’ve taken your four-legged friend for walkies of course!), or why not wash your car alone without the help of your dog. Just make sure that when you head out without your dog, you go through your normal routine when you leave the house.
Peace and quiet
Even dogs need some alone time when you are in the house, put their bed in a separate room to where you spend most of your time, so they can get used to having their own space. Let them get used to spending time on their cosy bed or their favourite blanket, so when you’re not there, they will go to their favourite place for a snooze.
Did someone say treat?
Our furry friends usually get a tasty treat when they perform a trick or play a game, so try rewarding your dog when they are calm and settled. By giving them one of their favourite treats, your dog knows they are being rewarded and it encourages that behaviour. Try dropping the treat by their bed or resting place and walking away so they don’t get overexcited and leave their beds.
Pop in for a visit
Try not to leave your dog alone for too long, only for a few hours at a time. If you can, pop back home during the day to visit or arrange for someone else to check in on your dog. Your dog might need a toilet break or a quick cuddle, so spend a few minutes with your furry friend and give them a little treat when they settle back down, this way they aren’t left by themselves for too long.
Letting your dog get used to spending more time alone is the best way to prepare them for when we are out of the house more. Make sure they are calm and have a comfy spot to settle down for an afternoon snooze, as well as plenty of water to keep them going. Have any more tips on keeping your dog calm? Then share with us on our social media!